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alanamoana

Sansei

6 posts in this topic

Hi everyone. I'm here in New York City and had the pleasure of meeting Chuck Furuya, D.K. Kodama and Hiroshi Fukui while they were in town for the "City Meals on Wheels" charity event.

They talked about their new venture on Maui, "Vino" and also the soon to be "Sansei Steakhouse".

What do locals think of their restaurant group/empire?!

When I was home last summer, I went to Maui for a couple of days and happened to end up at Sansei (can't remember which location) and they had a great kama'aina special...50% off between 5:30 and 6:00pm. We were wondering why there was such a long line out front!

Was pretty good too, but a little too much fried stuff.

So, I'm just checking in on the local scene.

Aloha,

alana

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No surprise those guys were in NY supporting a charity event, they are tireless participants in so

many events here in Hawaii, their spirit of aloha is truly admirable.

Hiroshi has a fabulous restaurant L'Uraku at 1318 Kapiolani Blvd. The interior is colorful and

sets the tone for his thoughtful cuisine. Now is the time to savor one of their blended cucumber

and vodka drinks to offset the high humidity and heat we are having. My personal favorite is

the Lobster Tomalley, enhancing the lobsters' own natural juices are mirin and shoyu lightly

veiling the lobster in potato starch and quickly deep frying, it is wonderful. If you are ever going

and want to have that go early or see if you can 'reserve' a lobster as they only get about 6 a day

since they are fresh Kona Cold lobster and need proper storage. He also does some wonderful things

with Moi and although I've never been his Kaiseki dinners are always a sell-out every few months.

I ate my way through the Vino menu at 2 separate dinners earlier this year. The wine list is just

mind blowing in scope and depth - and value. One of the specials we enjoyed was Pan Roasted Sea

Bass with Gnocchi, smoked oyster mushrooms, proscuitto, sugar snap peas in white truffle

maitre'd butter and morel demi glace. We also enjoyed some delicious starters as well. We were

surprised with a complimentary bottle of Prosecco that I have found in wine shopes and have

enjoyed many times since then. I don't eat desserts but when the rest of the table enjoyed their

Tiramisu, panna cotta, fresh berries with marsala zabaglione I ordered the fontina potato gratin

and reveled in the flavors and creamy texture. Next month during the Kapalua Wine and Food

Festival Vino is hosting what is probably going to be the premier winemaker/chef dinner on

July 10 and from what I hear is pretty much sold out by now.I will report on that when I return! Vino is the only Hawaii restaurant

to be listed in Conde' Nast's restaurants of distinction for this year, quite an honor - well deserved.

Sansei is a fun place to go especially with a group so you can order lots of things to try. My

favorite there is the calamari salad. I don't think the menu is heavy on fried items, certainly

there is a share of tempura offerings but most of the innovative sushi creations are the freshest

seafood with the just picked local produce added. I think that is commendable as well, all those

guys are committed to using the most freshest local produce, meats, and fish that they can find.

D.K. put out a really beautiful cookbook last year that you might want to check out. Next month

they are opening a Vino wine bar within Sansei that should be really fun to explore those Italian

wines that Chuck Furuya has made available - lucky all of us here!!!!!! Bon Appetit and A hui ho......


"You can't miss with a ham 'n' egger......"

Ervin D. Williams 9/1/1921 - 6/8/2004

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Great to hear from you Alana. Hope things are going well with Gray Kunz and folks in NY.

Want to concur with Oneidaone, who no doubt knows a lot more about these restaurants than I do.

Compared to other upscale,innovative local restaurants, Sansei (at least the Honolulu location) seems to serve a relatively larger kama`aina clientele. Their tempura items are very popular (local people do like their fried stuff, as KarenS can tell you), but as Oneida points out they're certainly by no means the dominant thing on the menu. Pretty typically locals will show up pretty late at night and hang out at the restaurant bar, ordering pupus and drinks from the very long appetizer menu.

L'Uraku is a lot of fun with its upside-down umbrella-filled, and the food is excellent and reasonably priced for the quality. It definitely takes a Japanese attitude towards its Hawai`i cuisine, with sophisticated use of ingredients like miso, wasabi, ume, etc.


Sun-Ki Chai
http://www2.hawaii.edu/~sunki/

Former Hawaii Forum Host

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I'd like to add that they are all very nice people. Before DK opened his restaurant(s), he was doing sushi two nights a week in the back of Haliimaile General Store (I was working there then). Beautiful sushi, and fun and friendly guys.

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And next month DK and Chuck Furuya are adding a "Little Vino" section to Sansei at Restaurant Row!

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How exciting it is!!!!! I am looking forward to the opening party on July 12th!!! Should be fun and

a great end to a long weekend at the Kapalua Wine and Food Festival!!!!!!! a hui ho......


"You can't miss with a ham 'n' egger......"

Ervin D. Williams 9/1/1921 - 6/8/2004

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